John Reynolds is an up-and-coming entrepreneur who has grown his home-grown invention into a profitable small business. Most days find John on the road selling, while his small office staff man the office and handle order fulfillment and shipping. His website’s domain name (DN) defines the name of his business, but he still uses Gmail to receive and send email. Sound familiar?
It’s not uncommon that we take on new website projects for small business owners who have a free Gmail or Yahoo! email address and want to keep it, even after they acquire a new domain name for their business.
They reason that their current customers have their (free) email address, so they worry that switching email addresses could lose business. They like being able to access their email from anywhere. In other words, the focus is on personal convenience rather than their customer!
People buy products or services to make their lives better or to fill a need. Their choice usually boils down to which solution most closely matches their expectation. In other words, they are attracted and motivated by the brand and the brand message.
You wouldn’t have a website domain like mybusiness.wordpress.com, so why have an email address like firstname.lastname@example.org?
We believe every business, even a 1-person business, should have a custom domain name and email address. Here’s why:
Branding rules the business world. It’s how customers remember you and why we print business cards with meaningful icons and certain colors.
An email address from Gmail or Yahoo screams “I’m not professional and I can’t afford to do it right.” You may not be able to afford to make a good product or provide me with good service either.
You already have a domain name, so you are already paying for a custom email address. There are plenty of tutorials to teach you how to set it up.
You can look larger than you really are. Email address like email@example.com, products@, service@, sales@ help organize your incoming email and also leave the impression of customer-centered professionalism. Still keeping it simple for you!
If you take your business seriously, use a professional email address. Don’t know where to start? Contact Linda with questions about branding and design or Eric about how to acquire a domain name and set up a professional email address for your small business. Part of our brand messaging is that “we always try harder and work smarter to create and build the creative things that foster deep connections between brands and their customers.” What’s your brand message? We’d like to hear how we can help you.
If you are now working from home on a computer, you’ve noticed that never before have we witnessed so much malware, phishing and ransomware scams and other deceptive email practices than during this COVID-19 “stay at home” period. The bad actors with way too much time on their hands see a goldmine of opportunity as employees work from home, outside the corporate firewalls.
We hope this will help you recognize and avoid being victimized by these scams.
How: From an email or text message, you are tricked into providing personal information like: name, address, phone, email, social security number, account numbers and passwords.
Why: They are trying to gain access to your bank account, credit card account, an online payment website you use, like Amazon.
How to Recognize: They usually look like the company you know or trust: same logo, colors, type font, even the same mottos or taglines. There’s usually an effort to scare you. They may say they noticed suspicious activity in your account, or you have a problem with your payment information, or you need to confirm some personal information for your own safety. Sometimes they even say you’re entitled to a refund or offer a freebie gift. Lately, they may suggest you need to provide personal information to become eligible for another government handout.
If read carefully, you may recognize bad grammar, typos, or unnatural arrangement of words and phrases that suggest a non-English speaking writer.
The better scammers are difficult to identify, like this refund notice from Amazon (compliments of GoPTG). If you’d recently purchased from Amazon, the notice looks flawless — so you click. However, if you had not made a recent purchase, alarm bells go off! So you click the link to quickly update both your address and your password. Bingo! A spammer’s double header.
Conscientious companies require home-based employees to log in for work-related activity, so it is usually our personal activity that serves as the playground for bad actors in cyberspace.
Color plays a significant role for the human brain. Color generates emotions, creates ideas, expresses messages, and sparks interest. Red says stop and green says to go, and together red and green are seen as Christmas. Bright colors set a happy and positive mood, whereas dark colors project the opposite. Light colors appear closer, whereas dark colors appear to recede. Warm colors like red, orange, and yellow show excitement, optimism, and creativity, whereas cool colors like green, blue and gray symbolize security, calmness, and harmony.
“All colors arouse specific associative ideas…”
Yves Klein, French artist
Colors chosen for a website use the psychology of color to provide strength and relevance to the design. It’s never about choosing colors simply because they look nice and you like them — it’s about choosing colors that will generate the desired response from your marketing materials and help create a connection with customers.
Here are some surprising pairs that work:
Brown and Orange
Why? Associated with home, hearth, and stability.
Says: At home I’m safe and comfortable.
Financial Services Green and Blue Why? Commands authority and inspires trust. Says: My money is safe here.
Black and Burnt Sienna
Why? Down to earth values, authoritative.
Says: I trust these people
Brown and Lime Green
Why? Reflective of nature and healing
Says: I feel a calm confidence
Orange and Turquoise
Why? Playful and energetic
Says: I feel good about this service
Want to learn more about the psychology of color?
Need a logo makeover, but don’t know where to start? Just send us a link to your current logo, whether or not it was designed in 1920 or 2020. We’ll assess whether it’s aesthetically tired or timeliness, how it tests on the myriad of technological devices that showcase your logo online, and analyze the color psychology from an outsider’s point of view. It may need only slight shifts, a simple refresh, or a whole new makeover. Don’t you think your business is worth finding out?! Analyze My Logo